Yesterday I told you my story about buying a smartphone and that I was so happy with the friendly salesperson’s advice.
He helped me cut through the display with all the smartphones hanging on the wall. Each of them accompanied by a card with all kinds of techy stuff on it. All features that often don’t make sense to me.
What do these features mean in plain English? What are the benefits for me in the way how I like to use my smartphone? That’s a great topic for another blog article, by the way.
Luckily, the friendly salesperson did a great job. I was ready to buy. With a happy smile because of getting this good deal.
We went to the counter. He opened the cupboard to get the phone, and I grabbed my red wallet to get my credit card.
And then this happened…
“Apologies, but my colleague has just sold the last one”, he said.
Oh bugger! That’s what I thought. And maybe he as well, because now he missed his sale and maybe his target for the day.
But he quickly searched in the computer to see whether more phones were making their way to the local store. And yayyy, there were four phones in transit.
Arrival day wasn’t known yet. But he took my contact details and promised that one of his colleagues would call me as soon as the phones arrive.
And then there was silence…
I waited a couple of more days and then, nearly at the end of the afternoon, I called the local store myself.
“Oh, apologies, has no one been in touch with you yet? The phones have arrived this morning, and we have sold 2 already. But we do have 2 more left.”
What if I didn’t call myself? What if I went to another store and negotiated at least the same or maybe even a better price?
Many small business owners and solopreneurs don’t follow-up with their potential clients either. Maybe once. But then they leave it because they think the potential client is not interested.
And some people believe that the client should call them not the other way around. “They will come when the time is right”.
Are you hesitant to follow-up? You’re not alone. Many people, and I was one of them, are reluctant too, because they think they disturb the person by ‘chasing’ him or her.
Not following up means a lost opportunity to win a good deal, for both you and your client. Because you have something valuable to offer to help your clients’ life or business move forward.
That doesn’t mean you have to be spammy or a stalker, of course.
But do keep connected. Show you care about his or her situation.
Keep track of how many times you have been in touch with this potential client and what his or her answers were. Add the next follow-up in your calendar as a reminder.
Here’s a follow-up sheet template you could use. I’m happy to share this with my readers. It’s a link to my online Google Sheets folder. Save your copy on your own computer and you can start using it immediately.
Now stretch yourself bit by bit. If you never follow up, do it once. If you follow up only once, then do it twice, etc.
Here’s a routine you could follow. Follow-up a couple of days after you sent your proposal to check if your potential client has any questions. If you haven’t heard any reply, then follow up a week later. Then try again a few weeks later. Is your potential client still stonewalling you? Then follow-up again a month or 2 later.
Don’t let the silence bother you. There are all sorts of reasons why a potential client doesn’t respond. Too much on their plate. Troubles in their life or in their business. Other things that popped up and need to be tackled first. Simply forget to answer emails. Or, your email has gone lost in cyberspace.
Always check your spam folder too, because sometimes emails get a detour to that place.
After that, transfer your potential client to your list of ‘quarterly check-ins’. There are many ways to give value to your clients and potential clients. But that’s another topic for another time.
I hope this article has given you some practical ideas about your follow-up system. Because that’s the ‘trick’: a consistent system. And now you have a got a handy tool to keep track of all your follow-ups. Here’s the link again:
Would a document with email follow-up templates be of value to you? If yes, please flick me an email to info[at]wayfindingentrepreneur.com and I’ll send you the link to that document.
Keep in touch!
Photo-credit: Jake Hills – Unsplash